EDITORIAL: Have you received your flu shot yet?

As cobwebs come down and frightful pumpkins make their way to dinner plates and compost piles, it’s time to revisit the fall checklist.

Is the flu shot checked?

Island Health reminded residents last month to get a flu shot early to protect themselves and their loved ones this season.

“Planning ahead and getting your flu shot early is an important way to protect yourself and your loved ones, especially those who are vulnerable to complications of influenza,” says Dr. Dee Hoyano, medical health officer for Island Health. “Many people are finding pharmacists and pharmacy flu clinics a convenient choice for getting their flu shot.”

Influenza (the flu) is among the top 10 leading causes of death in Canada, causing more than 12,000 hospitalizations and 3,500 deaths annually. The flu is an infection of the upper airway (nose and throat) caused by the influenza virus. Symptoms include fever, headache, runny nose, sore throat, fatigue and cough. The term “flu” is often used to describe other illnesses, such as a cold or stomach virus. However, flu symptoms are usually prolonged and more severe than a cold and do not include nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. The flu virus spreads between people through breathing, coughing and sneezing. Getting vaccinated is the best protection against the flu, and compliments other prevention measures, such as hand washing and staying home when sick.

And it’s not too late. Vaccines are available from a pharmacist or physician and families with children can get their flu shot at a public health clinic. The flu shot is free in B.C. for people at risk from complications and their closest contacts. That list includes children six months to five years old, seniors 65 and older, pregnant women, aboriginal people, indivduals with chronic health conditions or compromised immune systems, anyone who lives with any of the above people, and visitors to long-term care facilities and hospitals.

Just Posted

Stolen West Shore vehicle found in ocean off Oak Bay

SUV was submerged 90 feet from shore at Cattle Point

UPDATE: Woman hit by car in parking lot 93 years old

Driver of sedan backs into older adult walking through lot

Deadly mushroom spotted in Greater Victoria

Early return of death cap mushrooms prompts Island Health warning

Delivery truck downs power lines in Sidney

A tractor trailer delivering eggs clipped a low-hanging wire on Second St.… Continue reading

Arborist calling on Colwood to fix tree bylaw

Task force says bylaw will go before council in September

Trudeau asks transport minister to tackle Greyhound’s western pullout

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he’s asked Transport Minister Marc Garneau to find solutions in Greyhound Canada’s absence.

Saanich Police investigate store robbery

Store video captures image of suspect

Restaurant Brands International to review policy over poaching employees

One of Canada’s largest fast-food company to review ‘no-poach’ franchise agreements

Calgary family’s vacation ends in tragedy on Texas highway

Three people died and four others were injured in the crash

Union construction cost competitive, B.C. Building Trades say

Non-union firms can bid on infrastructure, but employees have to join international unions

Trudeau to shuffle cabinet ahead of Liberals’ team for 2019

Trudeau could lighten the work loads of cabinet ministers who currently oversee more than one portfolio

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of July 17

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Car calls 911 on possible impaired B.C. driver

A luxury car automatically calls Princeton police to scene of crash involving alcohol

BC Games marks 40 years in 2018

Cowichan Games a milestone for BC Games Society

Most Read